Problem with electric brakes on trailer

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by OKSooner, Dec 23, 2011.

  1. OKSooner

    OKSooner LawnSite Member
    Messages: 228

    I have a 14'x83" enclosed trailer that I've been using for leaf removal this fall. All of a sudden the electric brakes have stopped working.

    When I hook up in the morning the brake controller lights up with the "c" for connected, but when I step on the brake pedal it doesn't display the numeric indicator for the amount of brake juice being sent to the trailer brakes. Also I can feel it in the truck, definitely no braking coming from the trailer like there oughta be.

    I think that what caused this to happen is backing up and driving thru giant stacks of leaves at the place where I unload.

    So... I suppose I need to jack the trailer up and get into the brakes and figure out what's wrong... what do I look for? Anybody had this problem before and can suggest what the most likely problem is?

    Or maybe it's something else?

    Either way... Help! I cain't afford to take it to the shop right now!!
  2. bobcat_ron

    bobcat_ron LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,131

    Pop the break away out and listen for the humming.
    Replace your trailer brake controller if all else fails.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  3. OKSooner

    OKSooner LawnSite Member
    Messages: 228

    Thanks for the quick reply.

    What's the break away?
  4. bobcat_ron

    bobcat_ron LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,131

    It's a plug with a pin that is connected to a cable, in the event that your trailer pops off the hitch while ripping down the road, the cable gets pulled and yanks the pin out and breaks the circuit and the trailer brakes lock instantly. The break away devices need to be tested a few times a year and replaced once a year along with the gel cell battery.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  5. patpls

    patpls LawnSite Member
    from Mn
    Messages: 80

    It will be wiring, seems to be never ending, get ahold of a connection tester saves a ton of time.:clapping:
  6. professional

    professional LawnSite Member
    Messages: 77

    I had something similar happen to me. Ended up a holder above the driver side front axle broke and the wiring slacked down. It became pinched between the frame and axle and was severed. One brake was operating and three were not. The controller in my F250 said the trailer was unhooked. The controller in my buddies Tundra said it was hooked up ok. The Ford dealer found the problem. Much longer story than what I am relating.
  7. Big C

    Big C LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,642

    Check your ground wire
  8. corey4671

    corey4671 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,931

    second that one
  9. PlantscapeSolutions

    PlantscapeSolutions LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,009

    You need to learn how to use a multimeter so you can do some simple trouble shooting. A lot of times the problem will be a wire that has come loose inside the plug. Start by checking for voltage on the trucks plug.
  10. LindblomRJ

    LindblomRJ LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,570

    Even a $3 test light will do the trick of testing. A multi meter is also a good investment too.

    The first thing I'd check is ground. Then the wires on the trailer, then the plug.

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